In Nagaland, a pervasive problem persists in society: the proliferation of factions within Naga political groups, posing as freedom fighters. Rather than advocating for liberation, these factions have become synonymous with extortion, exploiting the very people they claim to serve.

For years, these self-styled governments have levied countless “taxes” on business enterprises and the general public alike, draining the state’s resources and burdening its inhabitants. The people of Nagaland are crying out for freedom from these supposed liberators turned extortionists. It is high time to recognize these actions for what they truly are: extortion.

The emergence of numerous factions competing for power has created disorder and uncertainty in a state already facing significant challenges. Despite past aspirations for “one government, one tax,” promoted by organizations like ACAUT, the landscape is now dominated by A to Z plus Ü factions called ‘government’, each imposing its own arbitrary taxes (extortion) on the people.

The Government of Nagaland must not turn a blind eye to this rampant exploitation of its people. Instead of addressing the root causes of factionalism, authorities seem to be complicit in the formation of new factions, further aggravating the problem. Who bestowed upon these factions the mandate to govern and tax? Why do the people continue to cooperate with entities that have deviated from the noble cause of Naga nationalism to indulge in factionalism and extortion?

It is imperative for the voices of reason and unity to prevail. Reconciliation and unification must take precedence over discussions about taxes—what some may call “donations” or “contributions,” but which the people rightfully see as extortion. The recent call by the Dimapur Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI) for an indefinite shutter down from April 26, 2024, is a step in the right direction. Despite inconveniences, it is a necessary sacrifice for the greater good of all Nagaland’s inhabitants.

The clarion call for unity against extortion must resonate across all districts of Nagaland. It is time for the people to stand united against the menace of factionalism and extortion, demanding accountability from those who claim to fight for their freedom. The government of Nagaland must take decisive action to dismantle these predatory factions and restore the state to a path of progress and prosperity. The time for change is now.


By Tali M Sashi Jamir

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